Boyd takes over

CLEMSON - After waiting two years, Tajh Boyd finally makes his first start against the Troy Trojans Saturday in Death Valley. He talks about his thoughts on the game right here.

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CUTigersTV: Tajh Boyd

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How does it feel to have it all on your shoulders now?
Boyd: It feels great. I'm definitely looking forward to it. I'm really excited. the energy is really great around here, which is really important for the game this weekend.

Thinking to when Chad Morris got hired, all you've had to learn and refine, how do you feel you've grown, and do you feel ready to take it to the next level?
Boyd: Definitely. Honestly, it feels like he's been here for a year or two already, even though it's only been a few months. Things are definitely coming along really well. Everybody's got a grasp of the offense and how it's supposed to be ran, how it's supposed to look. I guess we get tired of going against each other every day. We're definitely looking forward to playing against another opponent. We're all excited and really looking forward to it.

How different do you feel, Tajh?
Boyd: I feel like I've grown up a lot. I don't have too much game experience from last year. But, at the same time, I feel like I've had enough preparation from the spring and the fall, to be ready for these games. Like I said, we'll see where the work pays off this weekend.

You're back in a role like you were in high school. You're the man. Is it a similar sense where you're the leader and everything is on you?
Boyd: Yea. That comes with time, a little maturity level. I'm blessed to be in a position like this, where the guys respect what you do and know how much you work. As a whole offensive unit, I believe we're ready for this game. We challenge each other every day. We're really excited about it.

"I'm blessed to be in a position like this, where the guys respect what you do and know how much you work. As a whole offensive unit, I believe we're ready for this game. We challenge each other every day. We're really excited about it."

Coach Swinney said they scheduled in a high-step during a scrimmage, to make a point about the celebration penalty. What was that like?
Boyd: We've put a real big emphasis on the celebration rule. I really didn't know that went into effect this year. That's something that's really critical and crucial. I think it's to the point where things like that are in the spirit of the moment, you really get caught up. At the same time, it's things like that that can have a difference in the season. He made that a critical point. It's great to have a coach like that who stresses points like that. I'm happy to play for him.

That's your only high-step this season?
Boyd: Definitely.

If there wasn't a rule, what would be seen for celebration?
Boyd: I've never really been a celebratory guy. It's to the point where I'm excited, but it's still something we're supposed to do. We're the next step to professionals. I feel that's a way we should carry ourselves, the way we should act. I'm excited to play and for the fans to be there. I'm pretty sure there's going to be 80,000-plus there. We've got a new scheme going. I'm just ready to see how this thing takes off.

Tajh, internally, do you have to calm yourself down in your first start, given it's your first start and everything is on the line in your first season?
Boyd: Honestly, I don't know how I'm going to feel until I come down that hill. It's a little bit different coming down the hill, knowing that you may or may not play, but knowing you're not going to start. It's going to have a totally different feel to it. One of the songs I used to listen to in high school was Phil Collins 'In the air tonight'. It kind of calms me down a little bit. I'm definitely going to listen to that before the game. I'm excited to see how it goes.

So, at the top of the hill Saturday afternoon, you're going to be thinking about Phil Collins?
Boyd: Not necessarily. You kind of twisted it a little bit.

Coach Swinney said that he didn't feel like winning the game was all on your shoulders. How do you feel about that?
Boyd: We've got a lot of players this year. The way the offense works, it's to the point where I have to manage the game, but it's not to the point where I don't have to make plays. I'm going to do what I can with this offense. At the same time, we've got players like Andre Ellington who came back to make big plays. Take care of the ball, that's all I really have to do. No turnovers equals winning games. If we do that -- we've been doing really with that in the past month or so -- if things keep going like that, we should be fine.

How important will it be for you to get off to a fast start, to kind of get into the groove?
Boyd: I think it'll be pretty important. We definitely want to come out and score on the first couple of drives. If not, we've got to keep digging. This offense is similar to Auburn. They had success on their early drives. That's something we want to establish as well. I feel like if we do what we're supposed to do, we'll accomplish what we want to accomplish. Top Stories